Viral Marketing

Seoul’s Emart QR Sunny Sale

Korea’s largest retail chain, Emart, found that slumping sales at midday were casting a shadow over its revenues and came up with a clever way to attract lunch-time shoppers. At its 38 locations throughout Seoul, Emart installed three-dimensional QR codes on outdoor pillars located to catch the sun. Like a sundial, the shadows on the QR code moved as the sun changed position, and passersby were alerted that they could only read the QR code’s message between 12 noon and 1 pm. Consumers who scanned the code were directed to the Emart online store where they received $12 coupons for products that would be delivered to their homes. Thousands of consumers claimed Emart vouchers, and sales increased by 25% during the lunch hour.

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Viral Marketing

Drama in a Belgian Square

This video was produced to promote the launch of the TV channel TNT in Belgium. We’d tell you more but don’t want to spoil the tagline. The viral stunt was produced by the Duval Guillame Modem agency, with Geoffrey Hantson as creative director and Koen Mortier as director.

Viral Marketing

Mercedes-Benz Made You Look

You read about VW’s transparent factory (below); now take a look at Mercedes’s invisible car. Mercedes-Benz’s new zero-emission F-Cell car is being marketed as a vehicle that is virtually invisible to the environment. The reason is because it runs on hydrogen fuel cells that convert compressed hydrogen into electricity to power the motor. The only emission is water vapor. To promote this fact in a memorable way, Mercedes blanketed one side of the car with LEDs and mounted a Canon 5D Mark II camera on the other side. The LEDs displayed whatever the camera filmed, causing passersby to stop and gawk at the “invisible” car.

Humor

Breaking News: Murder, Cover-Up, Public Outrage, Riots…the Pigs Confess

The Guardian, the UK’s leading media organization, just launched a major brand repositioning campaign with a TV ad that reenacts how its “open journalism” approach works. Created by ad agency Bartle Boogle Hegarty (BBH) and directed by Ringan Ledwidge, the two-minute TV spot follows a breaking story of the Three Little Pigs being arrested in a police raid after boiling the Big Bad Wolf alive. It goes on to show how The Guardian coverage invites interaction with readers and internet users through the newspaper, website, blogs, tweets and video. Eyewitness reporting along with participatory analysis and opinions are facilitating an open exchange of information that has the potential to bring about real change — and The Guardian wants the public to know that it is leading the way.

Publishing

Is Publishing Dead?

Turn up the sound and pay attention to the words all the way through. This video titled “The End of Publishing” was presented by Penguin CEO John Makinson at an internal sales meeting. It was so well-received that Penguin decided to share it with a wider online audience.

Prepared by the marketing arm of Dorling Kindersley in the UK, the video was done by Khaki Films in Kent. Khaki says that the approach was inspired by the Argentine film, “The Truth,” by Savaglio/TBWA Buenos Aires, which won a Silver Lion at Cannes in 2006.

For “The End of Publishing,” Khaki’s writer Jason LaMotte took four days to piece together a script that made the exact opposite point when read forwards and backwards. From there, arriving at the right voice inflexions and pacing for the film was an amazing feat in itself. Very clever. Let’s hope that the backwards reading is true.

Humor

Abused to Make a Point

For home remodelers weighing whether real hardwood or Pergo XP laminate will wear better on the floor, check out this marketing video, produced by Atlanta-based ad agency, Fitzgerald+CO. Pergo XP foregoes the standard product performance demonstration and shows a cast of odd characters performing unspeakable acts on the flooring. Fitzgerald+CO wisely chose to film the ad in Venice Beach, California, where even bikini-clad roller skaters and Mr. Universe muscle men don’t cause a stir — just another day at the beach.

Humor

Tis the Season for Cats and Sheep

Whether pushing soft drinks, electronic games, clothes or jewelry, all the TV ads during the Christmas season seem alike. They are packed with every Christmas cliché — a rosy-cheeked Santa, cute kids in pajamas, elves, reindeer, snow, families gathered around the Christmas tree basking in the warm glow of a fireplace. If you’ve seen one Christmas commercial, you’ve seen them all – and can’t remember any of them, much less the product they’re promoting. So, it is refreshing to see some retailers strive for originality. Here, Brooks Brothers and Walmart chose animals to celebrate the season by singing “Jingle Bells.” There the similarity ends, and the fun begins.

Happy holidays, everyone.

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Public Service Campaign

Greenpeace Turns Chopsticks into Trees

Consider this: Consumers in China went through 57 billion pairs of disposable wooden chopsticks in 2009 alone, which equates to more than 3.8 million trees. For a nation that ranks 139th worldwide in forest land per capita, that means that China’s forests may be wiped out in 20 years if consumption continues at that rate.

Last winter Greenpeace East Asia and Ogilvy Beijing teamed with artist Yinhai Xu and students from 20 Chinese universities to stage a public awareness campaign. Together, they gathered some 80,000 pairs of used chopsticks from Beijing restaurants to assemble a “Disposable Forest” in a popular Beijing shopping center. The display urged people to carry around their own pair of chopsticks when eating out and asked them to sign a pledge to stop using disposable chopsticks. The 80,000 pairs of chopsticks that were transformed into four full-sized trees are a mere sliver of how many disposable chopsticks are used worldwide. Even though wood is a renewable resource is it really worth it to cut down a tree to make an eating utensil that is used once and thrown away?

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Viral Marketing

Virtual Supermarket — Wait No More

Up until now QR code technology has seemed more gimmicky than practical. Holding your smart phone up against a QR matrix on a magazine page or a storefront window to reveal the secondary message feels like a bothersome extra step that quickly grows tiresome.

But here’s a QR use that promises real convenience and time-savings. Tesco Homeplus in South Korea opened virtual supermarkets in subway stations, permitting commuters to use their smart phones to make grocery purchases. Designed by Cheil ad agency in Seoul, wall-size displays along the passenger waiting platform simulate the experience of shopping in a real supermarket, showing images and prices of a broad range of frequently needed products. Shoppers merely have to scan the QR code of any product they want to purchase to add it to their online shopping cart. The transaction is all completed online and the purchased items are delivered straight to shoppers’ homes.

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Viral Marketing

Nokia N8 Mobile Phone Film Winner

Here’s a novel way to get consumers to test out your product. In March, Nokia announced a competition to shoot a short film entirely with a Nokia N8 mobile phone. It invited entrants to send in a story pitch and offered a $5,000 filming budget and two Nokia N8s to eight finalists.

“Splitscreen: A Love Story,” directed by UK-based JW Griffiths, won the first place award of $10,000.

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Advertising

Braun Hairmoticons

This fun TV commercial, which won a 2011 One Club gold pencil award in the Broadcast Design single category, was created by BBDO Dusseldorf for Braun’s Satin Hair 5 Multistyler curler. The “hairmoticons” ad, set to the tune of Leroy Anderson’s “Typewriter,” suggest that users can curl their hair in whatever style suits their mood. The animation is by VCC. Cute.

Advertising

A Shoe That Floats on Air

This looks like a high-school science project, but it is really a commercial for Asics new Gel-Blur 33 athletic shoes, which Asics claims offers lightweight, cushioned comfort to all 33 joints in the foot. To illustrate the tagline “Gravity, Meet Your Archenemy,” Southern California-based creative agency, Vitro USA, strung multi-colored ping pong balls on fishing lines and pumped compressed air into a glass chamber, causing the balls to rise into the shape of an Asics 33 shoe and float in space. As with some of the amazing 3-D projection mapping videos now coming out, the behind-the-scenes making of this commercial needs to be seen to appreciate the feat achieved.

Motion Graphics

Hyundai Takes 3-D Projection
Mapping to New Heights

Just over a year ago, we ran a story about innovations in 3-D projection mapping. At the time, it was largely a performance demonstration that hadn’t yet become established for commercial marketing purposes. Now it has. This dazzling 3-D mapping stunt was created in Malaysia for the 2012 Hyundai Accent, which will be debuted at the New York Auto Show later this month. The part of the video that is real is the car, which was suspended from the side of a building, and the driver who “walked” to the car and got in to “drive.” The wheels spun, but the rest of the imagery was computer generated. One thing about 3-D mapping films is that they need to show viewers the reaction of the in-person audience and even the behind-the-scene production work to truly appreciate what the producers pulled off. Otherwise, just seeing the 3-D show on a screen would lead many to conclude that the whole thing was done on a computer.

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Public Service Campaign

Japanese Red Cross QR Code Appeal

Help Japan Now

SET creative agency in Japan, which has produced a number of imaginative QR code designs, has created this QR code logo for the Japanese Red Cross. The code reveals information on how to donate to the earthquake/tsunami relief effort in northern Japan. Worldwide, you can donate to a number of relief organizations that are helping victims of the devastating disaster, and we hope you will.